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“Fun stop for the family”

Elephant Seal Rookery
Ranked #1 of 15 things to do in San Simeon
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Reviewed June 8, 2013

There is a parking lot area beside the rookery and an information table. There are workers there if you have questions. We were there in early June and the beach was loaded with elephant seals. We enjoyed just watching them flip sand on their backs, wiggle around and sometimes they would fight with each other. The sign posted there said that not long ago, elephant seals were endangered, but their numbers have increased to about 15,000.

Thank Lori O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"hearst castle"
in 237 reviews
"their natural habitat"
in 93 reviews
"viewing area"
in 63 reviews
"fun to watch"
in 90 reviews
"huge creatures"
in 25 reviews
"amazing animals"
in 38 reviews
"flipping sand"
in 36 reviews
"answer questions"
in 63 reviews
"mating season"
in 37 reviews
"amazing sight"
in 42 reviews
"worth a stop"
in 60 reviews
"young males"
in 26 reviews
"off the highway"
in 32 reviews
"great stop"
in 47 reviews
"big sur"
in 50 reviews
"piedras blancas"
in 34 reviews
"these guys"
in 26 reviews
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2,179 - 2,183 of 2,584 reviews

Reviewed June 6, 2013

My sister had suggested we take time to see the elephant seals on our way down the coast. The area was well marked and the parking lot was ample for all the cars and buses stopping to take pictures.
I was shocked at how many thousands of seals were on the beach - however the smell should have given me a good idea! We were lucky to see so many young "pups" and such an array of different sized animals. Definitely something we will never forget.

1  Thank Lynnfromsandiego
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 5, 2013

A beautiful place to visit. The smell is awful - but to see a beach literally covered in seals is amazing. A humbling experience, and once to take advantage of if you are passing. Be prepared and have layers at hand - it can be very windy and therefore chilly (well it certainly was during our visit - almost knocking you off your feet!).

Thank Mis88
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 4, 2013

I pulled in because I saw the signs saying "elephant seal viewing area". On first viewing I thought "whatever". Went a little further and I was gobsmacked! What looked like boulders on the beach were thousands of seals! The smell was terrible, but the sight of the seals was amazing. Don't miss this sight!

Thank 51traveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed June 2, 2013

being from ohio we never get to see this sort of thing. It was truly a beautiful experience. there were elephant sea lions blanketing the whole beach. unfortunately when we were there it was a bit cooler than what i was prepared for so we didn't stay long. if i was better equipped i would of liked to hang out there and watch them for some time.

Thank OHTravel_Junkies
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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